Opinion: Don’t let Auchincloss sell us to Big Pharma

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NEWTON, MA – The following opinion piece was submitted by Newton residents Jean Weinberg and Lynn Weissberg.

As voters of Congressman Jake Auchincloss, we are very concerned about his unconditional support for drug companies at the expense of his constituents who are struggling to pay the high prices of prescription drugs. We are concerned that he will undermine a bill currently in Congress that would lower drug costs because Big Pharma gave him substantial contributions, including a SuperPAC funded by many pharmaceutical executives who helped him win last year.

Recently many of us received a flyer in the mail praising the congressman as a “champion of innovation in healthcare” and urging him to “defeat HR 3” (the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now). The mailer calls people supporting drug pricing reform “radical” and was sent by the American Life Sciences Innovation Council, which appears to exist only for “”rewards“to managers who are” champions “of the pharmaceutical industry. A few weeks ago, The Alliance for Patient Access – funded mostly by pharmaceutical companies – also gave our congressman a “award“for its support to pharmaceutical companies.

When asked about his support for Big Pharma’s excessive profits (far above what is needed for research and development), he dodged the questions.

Auchincloss did not denounce the shippers; nor did he return the contributions of the pharmaceutical executives. Recently he signed as a co-sponsor of HR3, but only after being loudly critical for having co-directed a letter sent to President Pelosi which endangers the success of prescription drug reform.

His belated decision to co-sponsor the bill gives him cover, but we don’t know what he’s doing behind the scenes. Let Congressman Auchincloss know that Congress must act to reduce drug prices. Ask him to With all my heart supporting HR3 and valuing its constituents above its deep-pocketed pharmaceutical donors.

Jean Weinberg
Staniford Street


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